15 Ukrainian Youth Embrace Islam
KIEV, July 20, 2005 (IslamOnline.net) – Fifteen Ukrainian youth embraced Islam, highlighting the spread of the faith in the former Soviet republic, with the efforts of the Islamic bodies in the country achieving tangible results.
The Ukrainian youth reverted to Islam at the Islamic center in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv -- a body affiliated to the Federation of Social Organizations (Arraid) -- the largest Islamic group in the country.
The center was opened less than two months ago and the 15 youth, seven males and eight females, frequently visited it and were informed about the faith through efforts of its workers.
"Since the opening of the Islamic center in Kharkiv in June 2005, many Ukrainians have been visiting the center to get knowledge of the Islamic teachings and civilization," the Arraid said in a statement e-mailed to IslamOnline.net Tuesday, July 19.
"In almost a month and half, such efforts resulted in convincing fifteen youth to embrace Islam," it added.
The federation groups 10 Islamic organizations and three Islamic centers in 10 Ukrainian cities.
Vitalie, a student at the Faculty of Economics, is one of the Ukrainian youth who adopted Islam as their new faith.
He frequently visited the library of the Islamic center to look for a faith that satisfies his religious needs.
One day, while reading a book about Islamic supplications, Vitalie was approached by a Muslim preacher at the center who asked him about the book he was reading.
"It is a wonderful book that makes you watch God in every move and action you do," Vitalie answered.
When asked about his faith, the Ukrainian young man said he has been looking for a religion that convinces him to embrace.
"But now, I feel I have found the religion that I can feel assured to accept."
After a discussion with the Muslim preacher on issues such as the Power of Allah, nature of Christ and Islam's stance on the family, neighbors and society, Vitalie pronounced the Shahadah (the testimony of faith).
"Since he pronounced there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah, Vitalie has been very happy and has been frequently visiting the Islamic center."
Asked about his future steps, Vitalie said he would first learn the pillars of Islam.
"Then I will try to convince my acquaintance, my parents, brother, friends and university teachers to embrace Islam."
There are two million Muslims in Ukraine, making up 4% of the overall 48-million population.
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